More research

Checking on locations from a computer is so much easier that going there. I am noted for setting my novels in Sussex, even if I don’t name the streets or buildings but this next book is set all over the country and I haven’t the time or money to go to every place.

Thanks to the internet I can view the settings I want to use and even get reviews so I can get a real feel for each place. I have been viewing pictures of Cornwall and it makes one want to visit, it looks so beautiful. The only time I usually look at photos is when I’m choosing a book cover but I haven’t decided what to put on the cover of this one yet. I’m only 15000 words in! I saved a picture but now I can’t find it to add to the post.

Another time, perhaps!

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Muddled thinking

See what a dental appointment did to me! ‘A picture tells a thousand words ‘ does it? Not when you can’t tell the difference between a paperclip and a chain. Of course I have been using a paperclip to attach things. It was the chain I hadn’t found a use for. Now I know it means ‘links’ I’ll have to experiment some more.

Yesterday was such a gloomy day and I am terrified of the dentist. No reason, she’s very sweet but I have had bad experiences in the past. Anyway, I was due for a filling in the afternoon and I should have kept away from the computer until it was all over. Now it is, and it didn’t hurt a bit, I can get back to writing and perhaps learn more as I go along.

I did ‘share’ with twitter for a while but it was too personal so I stopped.What I need to do is find some fellow writers and eager readers who might like some of what I write.The people I follow are such an inspiration and I feel I can’t be as interesting but I’ll keep trying.bookwormclipart

Research

I used to say I didn’t have to do research for my novels. They were all based on personal experience- places I had been, people I knew, situations that I was familiar with or news from the papers or TV. However, this book is different. My characters are travelling to places I have never seen, along routes I have never travelled. How accurate do I have to be?

In order to make it as realistic as possible I have been using a route planner on the computer. It tells me the route, the mileage, how long the journey takes and the service stations along the way. That was my first piece of research.

Then I wanted to know how much a house would cost in Italy – so I Googled some. If I had been a genuine purchaser I would have had a terrific choice ( if money was no object!)

There are documents I need to know about and dates I need to check but, at last, the computer is more than a word processor and a very useful tool for research.

No resolutions

New Years Eve tonight and I refuse to make a resolution. Yesterday we had our belated family get together and it worked very well with our daughter in-law feeding ten of us in their newly furbished living room. I cannot get used to the way this generation have the TV on all the time, even if they are not watching it, but I suppose it is like the way we use the wireless.

Having just discovered that someone follows ninety blogs I am concerned that I haven’t yet reached many, but then I would have no time for writing books. The next novel is taking shape and I am actually doing a little research this time. I haven’t decided which form of self publishing I will use. I am quite happy with the other six books so I don’t feel inclined to change. I write the story and hand it over to the designer and printer to produce, with input from me on the cover pictures, which we find on line. I am up to 5000 words and suppose, if I was pushed, I’d say finishing this would be a resolution but it doesn’t have to happen in 2018.

Booking a summer holiday for the two of us, with the dog, in a Cotswold cottage, has given me something else to look forward to. It might be self-catering but we usually end up having plenty of meals out . If I disappear for a while it means I’m creating elsewhere. Happy New Year.

Global blog

Thanks,India, France and the USA. Without you I would have almost no readers. I am having to force myself to write anything these days.

I have started a file of poems, old and new, and hopefully will attempt to write a new one for every special occasion. My Christmas one has already been published in a Sea Scribes anthology so I’ll have to try a new one. I did get an idea for an Easter one but it floated away from my memory before I had time to write it down. I don’t keep a notebook by the bed as we are advised to do – or take one out with me when I go shopping!

Then there’s Valentine’s Day, Midsummer day ( I’ve done Halloween) Guy Fawkes Day and, of course, the opportunity to do another pantomime. I do have thoughts about that but I’ll wait to see how the 2017 one is received before I start writing it. Folk might say they don’t want me to do another one.

I did once say I would not write my blog if I had nothing to impart so I may give it a rest until inspiration strikes! I’ll just try to find a picture for you. Julie.IMG_0078

Writing Course adventure

Adventure? Yes, I think so. Trying something new at 75 must be an adventure. Anyway I have been asked to do two things, consider a structure for my radio play and work out the main character. As usual with fiction one is asked to write a backstory so that you know how the person would react in any given circumstances. Age and occupation are a start but more is needed even if it is not required for purposes of the play.

I immediately made a mistake. I was keeping back an essential characteristic of my main protagonist and then put her into a situation she would never be in. When you give a publisher a synopsis of your book you are supposed to reveal everything and I guess the same applies here but I am very reluctant to reveal a surprise ending this early. I may even change the story as I go along!

As far as structure goes – I have absolutely no idea how long this will be! Knowing my writing style it is much more likely to be 15 minutes than 45. I don’t know whether to write the 15 minute one and add scenes or try to start the longer one.

You know when you write a novel and the editor says it would be better without the first chapter? I fear that might be the case with this and I’ll lose my audience after the first few minutes.

All good fun.